Steve Dorst’s Blog
JOBS for G.I.s: Joint Service Achievement Medal
The honor was a complete surprise. Given by former Air Force officer, Aneika Solomon, who is one of the five transitioning service members we follow in the film, the award reads: “Director Stephen Dorst distinguished himself by outstanding craftsmanship as Director and Producer, Z-Channel Films, Washington D.C. by creating the documentary film, G.I. JOBS. While in collaboration with DirecTV and working alongside Producer and Director Doug Gritzmacher, Director Dorst’s keen perspective was instrumental in capturing and melding the stories of five veterans from the services of the Army, Air Force, Navy and the Marines.”
Aneika, like the other four people we follow, was brave to share her story with us. I hope this films helps all of us to pay more attention to this transition out of the service, which is such a critical juncture in the lives of millions of people. Too often, I think, people figure they do their part by clapping for the military at a baseball game or supporting Congressional increases in defense budget spending. But that doesn’t cut it.
We have to do a better job of making the transition work for more people. We need to target resources better for education, workforce training, and other support. If you own a company, you can help out by keeping an open mind and trying to interview former military for every position, not just the ones they’re stereotyped in. If you know somebody that served overseas, try to learn more about Iraq and Afghanistan so you can better appreciate what they went through.
At the policy level, we should all encourage the DOD to share more information with veteran service organizations (VSOs) at the city level. Too often, these VSOs want to help, but don’t find out about veterans in need until they’re already jobless, homeless, or worse.
When you empower veterans, you strengthen communities.
Here are some organizations that Doug and I spent time with during our Los Angeles-based production of JOBS for G.I.s.
Salvation Army Haven
JVS Los Angeles
USC Center for Innovation and Research on Veterans & Military Families (CIR)
National Veterans Foundation
Veterans in Film and TV
Silhouettes for Vets
Goodwill Veterans Employment Program
Operation PAVE (Paralyzed Veterans of America)
LA County Dept of Military and Vet Affairs
Got Your 6
I'm a documentary director, DP, and
filmmaker based in Washington, D.C.
I like cycling, playing piano, epic powder,
electronica, and CA--while sipping an IPA.
Thx 4 reading! What about u? What are u into?
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